Two ways to enjoy great food
With a limited number of restaurants in Northern Berkshire County, it could be hard to find one that strikes the perfect balance between casual and upscale dining, but that’s just what Hops and Vines in Williamstown is doing.
Hops and Vines opened in 2011 with an original idea: to offer two separate restaurants in the same location. On one side, the “hops” restaurant would offer a casual atmosphere and menu. A larger adjacent room, the “vines” restaurant, would offer a fancier dining experience with a focus on fine dining. Both restaurants would operate out of one kitchen. With the plan set, the restaurants launched, but it was quickly realized by the management team that something wasn’t working very well.
The dining concept was not allowing diners to experience the best of both menus, depending on where the diner chose to sit. Because they were operating from the same kitchen, they quickly combined the two-menu concept into one cohesive menu. Hops and Vines gave customers the chance to eat what they’d like, regardless of where they chose to dine.
On any day, you will find people of all backgrounds sitting down to a delicious meal or handcrafted cocktails. The kitchen, which is headed by partner and Executive Chef Robert Beuth, offers honest American comfort food with a focus on seasonality and locally sourced ingredients. Chef Beuth, a native of Pittsfield, grew up in a restaurant family. His dad, Tom, owned a series of restaurants while Rob was growing up. Among the restaurants were Jimmy’s and Giovanni’s in Pittsfield and Zampano’s in Lenox. Rob’s high school days cooking in his dad’s restaurants set him on a course for a culinary career.
Chef’s menu, which changes daily, is a reflection of the freshly sourced produce and the quality of proteins prepared to highlight the natural flavors of those foods.
Which brings us to the best part of Hops and Vines: The restaurant offers the ultimate range of options for diners regardless of what the occasion may be. During the school year, you’ll find college students attending “Dollar Taco Thursdays” and in the summer months you’ll find celebrities, actors and locals alike lounging by the fire outside, sharing a cocktail and appetizers. On the “vines” side, you’ll find a large bar and smaller tables. On the “hops” side, large picnic-style tables and a smaller bar with sports TV, offer a laid-back feeling.
Hops & Vines
16 Water St, Williamstown, MA
Matthew LaBombard, is a publicist at Storey Publishing in North Adams. A native of Berkshire County, he currently lives in Williamstown. An avid cook, Matt spends his free time entertaining and cooking for friends and family.